ENGLISH - Boston Public Schools

 
ENGLISH - Boston Public Schools
ENGLISH
ENGLISH - Boston Public Schools
2018–2019 DISTRICT CALENDAR
 August 14-16 ................August Leadership Institute         January 21.................M. L. King Jr. Day: No school                Major Religious & Cultural Holidays
 August 20-22 ................... Teacher Summer Institute        February 18 ................... Presidents’ Day: No school
 August 23........Up Academies: Boston, Dorchester,               February 19-22............. February Recess: No school                  Aug. 22 ......... Eid al-Adha        Feb. 5 .....Lunar New Year
         and Holland, all grades − first day of school              February 25 .................. Students return from recess              Sept. 10-11 ..Rosh Hashanah          Apr. 19 .........Good Friday
 September 3 .......................... Labor Day: No school      April 15 ..............................Patriots’ Day: No school         Sept. 19 ........ Yom Kippur         Apr. 20-27 ..........Passover
 September 4-5 ........... All teachers and paras report          April 16-19 .......................Spring Recess: No school             Nov. 7 ........ Diwali begins        Apr. 21 ...................Easter
 September 6 .......... Students in grades 1-12 report,           April 19 ................................................ Good Friday   Nov. 22 .......Thanksgiving          Apr. 28 .. Orthodox Easter
                    including grade 1 in ELCs and EECs:             April 22 ........................ Students return from recess           Dec. 25 ............ Christmas       Apr. 22 ............. Earth Day
 September 11 ........... Kindergarten students report,           May 27 .............................Memorial Day: No school             Dec. 3-10 ......... Hanukkah         May 5 ..... Ramadan begins
                  including EECs, ELCs, and special ed.            June 4 (or day 170) ....................Last day for seniors            Dec. 26 - Jan. 1 ..Kwanzaa           May 12 ........Mother’s Day
 October 8 ...................... Columbus Day: No school         June 17 (or day 179) ........ Early release for students                Jan. 1 ...... New Year’s Day         June 5 .............. Eid al-Fitr
 November 12 ..Veterans’ Day (observed): No school                June 18 (or day 180) ................... Last day of school:            Jan. 6 .... Three Kings Day          June 16 ........ Father’s Day
 November 21 .....Early release for students and staff                                                   Early release for students         Observance of Jewish and Islamic holidays begins at
                                           Dever - Full day off    June 18 is the 180th school day if no days are lost                               sundown of the preceding day.
 November 22-23... Thanksgiving Recess: No school                   due to cancellations.
 December 24 - January 1 ..Winter Recess: No school               June 25 is the 185th day required for calendar
 January 2.................... All teachers and paras report        purposes.
  January 3...................... Students return from recess      No graduation program should be scheduled
                                                                     before June 4, 2019.                                                   w All BPS offices and Welcome Centers closed.

                      AUGUST 2018                                                       SEPTEMBER 2018                                                          OCTOBER 2018
   S        M         T       W        Th        F        S           S        M          T         W         Th         F         S           S        M        T           W         Th         F         S

                              1         2        3        4                                                                        1                    1        2           3          4         5         6
                                                                                    w                                                                    w
   5        6         7       8         9       10       11           2         3         4         5          6         7         8           7        8        9           10        11        12        13
                                                                                        
  12       13         14      15       16       17       18           9        10        11         12        13        14        15          14       15        16          17        18        19        20
                                         
  19       20         21      22       23       24       25         16         17        18         19        20        21        22          21       22        23          24        25        26        27
                                                                   23
  26       27         28      29       30       31                    30       24        25         26        27        28        29          28       29        30          31

                     NOVEMBER 2018                                                      DECEMBER 2018                                                           JANUARY 2019
   S        M         T       W        Th        F        S           S        M          T         W         Th         F         S           S        M        T           W         Th         F         S
                                                                                                                                                                      w          
                                        1        2        3                                                                        1                             1           2          3         4         5

   4        5         6       7         8        9       10           2         3         4         5          6         7         8           6        7        8           9         10        11        12
                 w
  11       12         13      14       15       16       17           9        10        11         12        13        14        15          13       14        15          16        17        18        19
                                            w        w                                                                                                      w
  18       19         20      21       22       23       24         16    17             18         19        20        21        22          20       21        22          23        24        25        26
                                                                   23    24                   w
  25       26         27      28       29       30                    30    31           25         26        27        28        29          27       28        29          30        31

                     FEBRUARY 2019                                                       MARCH 2019                                                               APRIL 2019
   S        M         T       W        Th        F        S           S        M          T        W         Th         F          S           S        M        T           W         Th         F         S

                                                 1        2                                                              1         2                    1        2           3          4         5         6

   3        4         5       6         7        8        9           3         4         5         6         7          8         9           7        8        9           10        11        12        13
                                                                                                                                                            w                                         w
  10       11         12      13       14       15       16          10        11        12        13        14         15        16          14       15        16          17        18        19        20
                 w
  17       18         19      20       21       22       23        17          18        19        20        21         22        23          21       22        23          24        25        26        27
                                                                  24
  24       25         26      27       28                            31        25        26        27        28         29        30          28       29        30

                          MAY 2019                                                         JUNE 2019                                                               JULY 2019
   S        M         T       W        Th        F        S           S        M          T         W         Th         F         S           S        M        T           W         Th         F         S
                                                                                                                                                                                            w
                               1        2        3        4                                                                        1                    1        2           3          4         5         6
                                                                                              
   5        6         7        8        9       10       11           2         3         4         5          6         7         8           7        8        9           10        11        12        13

  12        13        14      15       16       17       18           9        10        11         12        13        14        15          14       15        16          17        18        19        20
                                                                                             
  19        20        21      22       23       24       25         16         17        18         19        20        21        22          21       22        23          24        25        26        27
                 w                                                 23
  26        27        28      29       30       31                    30       24        25         26        27        28        29          28       29        30          31

                      Extenuating circumstances and/or inclement weather may necessitate changes to the calendar during the year.
                                                     Visit www.bostonpublicschools.org/calendar for current information.
                                                Produced by the Boston Public Schools Communications Office | July, 2018
2018–2019
      Guide to the
 Boston Public Schools
for Students & Families
                             Produced by:
           The Boston Public Schools Communications Office
                 Bruce C. Bolling Municipal Building
             2300 Washington Street, Roxbury MA 02119
                            617-635-9265
              communications@bostonpublicschools.org
                    www.bostonpublicschools.org

                                Cover Artwork by:
  Ms. Collymore’s Class, Roger Clap Elementary School: Mia Avelar, Aniyah Bing,
   Anyah King, Lianna Cardoso, Demetrius Correa, Joana Dako, Kaelissa Meija,
Yoseliani Ocasio, Jordyn Rivera, Kelyce Watson, Daniel Uzoma, Jalen Weatherhead,
  Adam Daoud, Lisandro Dosreis, Cayden Rollins, Kathryn Nguyen, Keira Cantor,
  Anyla McQueen Simpson, Corrina Hinds, Daniel Contreras, Ismacil Mohammed,
     Anthony Cabral Jimenez, Yaslene Pepin. Art Teacher: Connie Cummings.

              The Guide to the Boston Public Schools is available in
     Arabic, Cape Verdean Creole, Chinese, English, French, Haitian Creole,
                 Portuguese, Somali, Spanish, and Vietnamese.

    This publication summarizes many laws, policies, regulations, and
    practices that are important to Boston Public Schools (BPS) students and
    their parents and guardians. It is not intended to be a complete directory
    of all laws and policies concerning students and parents.

    Federal and state laws, BPS policies, regulations, and practices at
    the district and school building levels are subject to change. Some
    information may have changed since the Guide was printed in July 2018.
2018–2019
      Guide to the
 Boston Public Schools
for Students & Families
                           City of Boston
                           Martin J. Walsh, Mayor
                Boston School Committee
                           Michael Loconto, Chair
                       Dr. Hardin Coleman, Vice-Chair
                               Michael O’Neill
                           Alexandra Oliver-Dávila
                               Jeri Robinson
                              Regina Robinson
                              Dr. Miren Uriarte
                    Boston Public Schools
                   Laura Perille, Interim Superintendent

                         September 2018

                         Our Mission
 A   s the birthplace of public education in this nation, the Boston Public
     Schools is committed to transforming the lives of all children through
 exemplary teaching in a world-class system of innovative, welcoming
 schools. We partner with the community, families, and students to
 develop in every learner the knowledge, skill, and character to excel in
 college, career, and life.

                  Non-Discrimination Policy
 The Boston Public Schools, in accordance with its nondiscrimination policies,
 does not discriminate in its programs, facilities, or employment or educational
 opportunities on the basis of race, color, age, criminal record (inquiries
 only), disability, homelessness, sex/gender, gender identity, religion, national
 origin, ancestry, sexual orientation, genetics, or military status, and does
 not tolerate any form of retaliation, or bias-based intimidation, threat, or
 harassment that demeans individuals’ dignity or interferes with their ability
 to learn or work.
Table of Contents
Table of Contents
2018–2019 School Calendar                Inside front cover         Health Program Surveys                         32
Message from the Interim Superintendent                    4        Healthy and Safe Environment                   32
Directory of Services for Families                         5      Guidance Counseling                              32
Family/School Partnership                                         Transportation                                   33
   The School Connection                                   6      Food and Nutrition Services                      35
   The School Parent Council and School Site Council       6   BPS Policies
   Other Groups for Parents                                7     Student Safety and Emergencies                    36
   BPS Welcome Centers                                     7     Non-Discrimination and Civil Rights               38
   Parent University                                       7     The Code of Conduct                               39
   Outreach to Families                                    7     Using Technology in School                        42
   Visitors are Welcome!                                   8     Residency Requirement for Students                43
   Communications Policy                                   8     School Registration and Assignment                44
   Advocating for your Child: Problem-Solving Checklist    9     Student Records                                   46
   Learn More about Family and Community Partnership       9     Graduation Ceremonies                             48
   Preparing for a Productive Parent-Teacher Conference   10     Homework                                          48
   The Home Connection: Simple Ways to Encourage Learning 11     Tardiness                                         48
   Math and Reading Tips for Parents                      12     Student Lockers                                   48
Promotion and Assessment                                         Mobile (Cell) Phones                              49
   The BPS Promotion Policy                              13      Personal Property                                 49
   The Promotion Policy and School Attendance            14      Report Cards                                      49
   Support for Students Who Need Extra Help              15      Athletics                                         50
   Assessment: Measuring Student Achievement             16      School Cancellations                              50
   MCAS                                                  16      Student Engagement and Governance                 50
   Elementary School: Summary of Promotion,                      School Uniforms                                   51
      Testing, and Homework Requirements                 18      Care of Books and Other Materials                 51
   Middle School: Summary of Promotion,                          Drinking Water Availability                       51
      Testing, and Homework Requirements                 20      Tobacco-free Environment Policy                   51
   High School: Summary of Promotion,                            Expectant and Parenting Teen Policy               51
      Testing, and Homework Requirements                 22    More Resources for Families
Special Programs                                                 The Elementary & Secondary Education Act (ESEA)   52
  Special Education and Student Services                 24      School Accountability                             52
  English Learners                                       24      School and District Report Cards                  53
  Students who are Homeless                              25      Teacher Quality                                   53
  Educational Options                                    26      Parent Engagement Policy                          54
  Advanced Work Class & Excellence for All               26      The Home-School Compact                           55
  The Exam Schools                                       27      Quality School Plan                               55
  Home and Hospital Tutoring                             27      English Learners                                  56
  Home schooling                                         27      School-Community Partnerships                     56
                                                                 School-based health Centers                       64
Services for Students
  Health and Wellness                                    28    Organizations that Provide Parent Training
    Behavioral Health Services                           28    and Professional Development                        57
    Health Services                                      28    Directory of Boston Public Schools                  60
    Health Education                                     30
    Physical Education                                   31    2018–2019 Marking Periods and
                                                               Report Card Schedule        Inside back cover

FILL OUT THE PARENT & STUDENT AGREEMENT AT www.bostonpublicschools.org/contact                                      3
A Message from Interim Superintendent Perille
                                                                    Dear Parents, Guardians, and Students:
                                                                    Welcome to an exciting new school year. I am honored
                    the
 le a s e fill out                                                  to serve as your interim superintendent. I look forward
P                         t
         t &   S tuden                                              to partnering with you in educating and supporting our
 Pare  n                 t                                          young people to cultivate an even stronger Boston Public
       t a c t  form a          ools.
  Co n
                 o n p u blicsch                                    Schools for all students.
            ost
   www.b               !                                        We live in a city with a proud history, regarded as the
              ntact
    org/co                                                      Cradle of Liberty and the birthplace of public education.
                                                                We are home to the nation’s first public school and its
                                                                oldest public elementary school — institutions that have
                                        continuously educated Boston’s children for nearly 400 years.
    The Parent & Student                Boston is also known as a hub of innovation, propelled by world-class universities,
    Contact form at www.                top-notch teaching hospitals, and a booming biotech industry that are reshaping our
    bostonpublicschools.org/            world today and into the future. Our aim is to prepare our students to embrace this
    contact is very important. It       future.
    asks for vital information.         I have made equity in education my life’s work. Our mission at the Boston Public
    The information is                  Schools is to ensure that all of our students receive a high-quality education, in a
    confidential and will be part       school that builds on their assets and supports their aspirations. We must ensure that
    of each student’s file in the       every child who walks through our doors has the opportunity to develop the skills
    Student Information System.         and knowledge necessary to fulfill their dreams and succeed in college, career, and
                                        life.
    All new families to the             Why is this Guide important? For one thing, it explains many of the policies
    Boston Public Schools               that affect students: for example, what they must do to be promoted to the next grade,
    are receiving this Guide.           and our expectations for maintaining a safe, healthy, and welcoming learning
    Please read the Guide to            environment for students and staff. It further explains how we help students when
    understand the policies             they don’t meet these expectations.
    and laws that affect your           Second, it describes the many ways families can support their children’s learning at school
    children.                           and home.
                                        Third, it describes the many rights that are guaranteed by law to students and their
                                        parents: for example, the right to be treated equally regardless of race or disability,
                                        the right to participate in school decision-making, the right to know the qualifications
                                        of the child’s teacher, and the right to privacy regarding student records. It also
      Suggestion                        advises parents and students about what to do if they think their rights may have
         Box                            been violated.
                                        Fourth, the Guide gives helpful information on many topics, from testing to transportation
                                        to health services to school cancellations.
    The Boston Public Schools
                                        Finally, it has directories of BPS schools and offices, a checklist for solving problems,
    would love to hear from
                                        education resources for families, and the school-year calendar (inside the front cover).
    readers about this Guide.
    • Is it helpful?                    School-Based Rules. In addition to state and federal laws and the district’s Code
    • Is any information                of Conduct, each school has its own set of policies, approved by the School Site
                                        Council. Your principal or headmaster should give you a copy of the school-based
       missing or confusing?
                                        rules along with this Guide.
    • Do you have suggestions
       for next year’s Guide?           All our policies and rules have only one goal: to help prepare every student
                                        for success in college, career, and life in a safe, healthy, and welcoming learning
    Please contact:                     environment. With your support and involvement, we can reach that goal together.
    communications@
    bostonpublicschools.org
    617-635-9265                        Laura Perille
                                        Interim Superintendent

4           BOSTON PUBLIC SCHOOLS GUIDE FOR STUDENTS & FAMILIES 2018–2019                              www.bostonpublicschools.org
Directory of Services for Families
Boston Public Schools (BPS) Offices                                                                  BPS Welcome Centers
MAIN NUMBER..................................................................... 617-635-9000        Dorchester                                         Roxbury
                                                                                                     ) 617-635-8015                                     ) 617-635-9010
Adult Education and Evening High School........................... 617-635-9300
                                                                                                     Campbell Resource Center                           Bolling Municipal Building

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Directory of Services
Boston Student Advisory Council (BSAC).............................. 617-635-9660                    1216 Dorchester Ave.                               2300 Washington St., 2nd Fl.
Communications (media, website and publications)........... 617-635-9265
                                                                                                     Roslindale                                         East Boston
Counseling Services............................................................. 617-635-8030                                                           617-635-9597
                                                                                                     ) 617-635-8040
Countdown to Kindergarten................................................. 617-635-6816              Jennie Barron Building                             Mario Umana Academy
Data and Accountability (testing)......................................... 617-635-9450              515 Hyde Park Ave.                                 312 Border St.
Early Childhood Education................................................... 617-635-9701                                                        Open Mondays and Tuesdays. Additional hours
Educational Options (Alternative Education)........................ 617-635-8035                                                                     in January, late August, and early September:
                                                                                                                                                     Wednesdays Noon-7 p.m.
Employment Permits, Students............................................ 617-635-8030
Engagement (school and family support)............................ 617-635-7750                      2018–2019 Hours of Service:
Engagement (central office)................................................. 617-635-9660            School Year: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday:
English Learners................................................................... 617-635-9435                  8:30 a.m.–5 p.m. / Wednesday: Noon–7 p.m.
                                                                                                     July 2019:   Only the Roxbury Welcome Center is open. Monday-
   District EL Advisory Committee......................................... 617-635-9435
                                                                                                                  Thursday, closed Fridays, at the hours above.
Enrollment Planning & Support (school assignments)........ 617-635-9516                                           Visit our website for details, bostonpublicschools.org/
Equity (discrimination and civil rights issues)...................... 617-635-9650                                          welcomecenters
Exam Schools and Advanced Work Class (AWC)................... 617-635-9512                           Closed:                Federal, state, and city holidays
Family Literacy Center.......................................................... 617-635-9300                              These hours do not apply to the East Boston center.
Food and Nutrition Services................................................. 617-635-9144
Guidance Services................................................................ 617-635-8030                Safe Space & Bullying Prevention Hotline
Health and Wellness............................................................ 617-635-6643
                                                                                                                     617-592-2378 (call or text)
Hearings and Appeals (disciplinary issues).......................... 617-635-1577
                                                                                                        For students and parents/guardians to report bullying at school, out of
High School Support............................................................ 617-635-8079            school, online, and via electronic devices; and for students or parents/
Homeless Students.............................................................. 617-635-8037                    guardians to report safety concerns in or out of school.
Human Capital (personnel).................................................. 617-635-9600                                  Staffed 24/7 by trained counselors.
Instructional and Information Technology (OIIT).................. 617-635-9199
                                                                                                                   Residency Tip Line ) 617-635-9609
Medical Services................................................................... 617-635-6788
                                                                                                                  Leave anonymous tips about students attending the
Newcomers Assessment and Counseling Center
                                                                                                               Boston Public Schools who do not live in the City of Boston.
(language testing)................................................................ 617-635-1565
Ombudsperson.................................................................... 617-635-9054
Parent University.................................................................. 617-635-7750     Additional Services
Re-engagement Center........................................................ 617-635-2273            Boston: City Services (9 a.m.–5 p.m.)...............boston.gov | 617-635-4000
Safety Services...................................................................... 617-635-8000     Mayor’s 24-Hour Line.........................................................................311
School Committee................................................................ 617-635-9014          Boston Centers for Youth & Families (BCYF)..................... 617-635-4920
Special Education and Student Services............................... 617-635-8599                     Mayor’s Health Line.......................................................... 800-847-0710
   Special Education Parent Advisory Council...................... 617-297-7335                        Mayor’s Office of New Bostonians (multilingual)............. 617-635-2980
Student Records................................................................... 617-635-9507        Mayor’s Youthline............................................................. 617-635-2240
Summer School.................................................................... 617-635-9336       Massachusetts Department of Elementary &
Superintendent’s Office........................................................ 617-635-9050         Secondary Education (DESE).............. www.doe.mass.edu | 781-338-3300
Title I Training Center............................................................ 617-635-7750       Charter School Information.............................................. 781-338-3227
Transportation...................................................................... 617-635-9520    Parent Training and Resources.......................................... See pages 57-59

FILL OUT THE PARENT & STUDENT AGREEMENT AT www.bostonpublicschools.org/contact                                                                                                                      5
Family/School Partnership:
The Home-School Connection
F  amily engagement plays a key role in helping students succeed
   in school and in developing a sense of pride in the school
community. The Boston Public Schools (BPS) is committed to
helping schools, staff, families, students, and the community to
establish active partnerships that strengthen student learning and
improve schools.
The Office of Engagement works with all BPS schools to build
the capacity of families and school staff, organize School Parent
Councils and School Site Councils, plan activities to engage
families in their children’s learning, and support parents and
school staff in their efforts to better communicate and work
together to increase student learning, especially families of English
learners and families who have children in special education
programs.                                                               that administrators, students, teachers, and parents will undertake
                                                                        to improve student achievement.
Here are some examples of how schools engage families in student
                                                                        See pages 52-56 to learn more about Title I, the Every Student
•
learning:
    individual parent-teacher conferences with a focus on sharing       Succeeds Act (ESSA), and home-school partnership.

•
    and explaining student progress (at least two per year)
    workshops on the subjects your child will learn, tips and           The School Parent Council
    strategies to help your child at home, and a guide to help your     All BPS schools—including pilot schools and in-district charter

••
    child prepare for tests                                             schools—must have a School Parent Council (SPC). The SPC
    home visits by school staff or other parents                        brings all parents in the school community together to support
    special events, such as Math and Literacy Nights, Academic          the school and advocate for quality education. As the parent or

 •
    Parent-Teacher Teams, and Data Nights                               guardian of a BPS student, you are automatically a member of
    School Parent Council and School Site Council or Governing          your School Parent Council. The SPC must elect an Executive

 ••
    Board.                                                              Committee and take steps to ensure that it is active and diverse,
    Parent University learning sessions                                 representing all families within the school. The SPC also elects
    opportunities to volunteer—in classrooms, the school Family         representatives to serve on the School Site Council (SSC) and
    Center, fundraising activities, and fun events.                     works closely with the SSC to review the school’s budget,
                                                                        recommend programs, sponsor events, solve problems, and raise
••
Every Boston public school is expected to:
   set aside space and resources for parent meetings                    funds for special school activities. The SPC should also select
   schedule time each week for teachers to contact or meet with         parents as representatives to the Citywide Parent Council (CPC),
                                                                        the Special Education Parent Advisory Council (SpedPAC), and
 ••
   parents
   respond promptly to questions and requests from parents              the District English Learners Advisory Committee (DELAC). For
   communicate regularly with parents in the language spoken in         more information about these organizations, visit Resources for
                                                                        Families on pages 57-59.
  •
   the home
   provide opportunities for two-way communication so that              What if your school doesn’t have an SPC? Contact the Office of

  ••
   families are able to give input and feedback                         Engagement (OOE), 617-635-7750. They can help you work
   share and explain student data in a family-friendly format           with your school leader to start one. Also contact OOE if the
   inform parents in a family-friendly format of strategies to          school is not notifying you of SPC and SSC elections, meetings,

   •
   improve student achievement at school and at home                    and events.
   provide parents with a syllabus (a written summary) of the
   main topics to be covered in each course.                            The School Site Council
Family Engagement and Title 1                                           Many decisions affecting the education of BPS students are made
                                                                        in schools. School-based decision-making is the responsibility
All schools that qualify for federal Title I funding must have a        of the School Site Council. All schools must have a School Site
written parent engagement policy, developed with and approved by        Council or a Governing Board. School Site Councils approve
parents. This policy should spell out how parents will be involved      school policies and rules and review the budget. The School Site
as partners in their children’s education.                              Council also may request waivers from some BPS policies. Parents are
In addition, every Title I school must develop a home-school            important members of these councils.
compact, which is an agreement that defines the responsibilities

6        BOSTON PUBLIC SCHOOLS GUIDE FOR STUDENTS & FAMILIES 2018–2019                                  www.bostonpublicschools.org
The Personnel Subcommittee of the School Site Council approves the
hiring and transfers of teachers who are members of the Boston Teachers
Union. It must have one parent member, selected by the SSC’s parent           About the School Parent Council
representatives.                                                             ‡‡ Every school must have a School Parent Council (SPC).
                                                                                All parents are members. Only parents can be
Other Groups for Parents                                                        members.
In addition to the School Parent Council and School Site Council,
the BPS has groups for parents whose first language is not English           ‡‡ The SPC is the place where parents can express their
and whose children have disabilities. Phone numbers are on page 9.              concerns, advocate for the school, and plan school
                                                                                activities and events.
Welcome Centers                                                              ‡‡ The SPC elects its Executive Committee at a meeting
The Boston Public Schools’ Welcome Centers offer many services for              held each year in the fall, not later than October 15. At
families. They are listed on page 5. Visit one of our Centers to:               that meeting, it also elects parents to serve on the
 get advice about your school choices and BPS policies                         School Site Council.
 register students for school
 apply for transfers to other schools                                       ‡‡ SPC officers are supposed to meet regularly
 fill out a change-of-address form if you move                                 with the principal to discuss school-wide issues.
 pick up information (in many languages) about schools, summer
   programs, and health and human services resources available to

                                                                                                                                                Family/School Partnership
   Boston families
 learn how you can become engaged with your child’s school and
   support their learning at home
PLEASE NOTE: Parents/guardians must produce identification for ALL
                                                                                About the School Site Council
transactions at the Welcome Centers.
                                                                             ‡‡ Every school must have a School Site Council or
Parent University                                                                Governing Board.
Parent University is a free learning experience designed to help BPS         ‡‡ The School Site Council is made up of parent
parents increase their understanding of how children learn and                   representatives, teachers, the principal, and associate
develop; what their children should be learning; how to help their               members. High school councils also have two student
children succeed; and how to bring other parents together to work                members. The number of parents must equal the
for school improvement. Parent University also offers classes such as            number of professional educators (including the
financial management, health and wellness, English for Speakers of               principal/headmaster).
Other Languages (ESOL), and computer literacy.
                                                                             ‡‡ Parent representatives on the School Site Council are
 bostonpublicschools.org/parentuniversity or                                    elected at the annual School Parent Council (SPC)
   617-635-7750                                                                  election meeting. This meeting must be held by
                                                                                 October 15.
Outreach to Families
                                                                             ‡‡ The School Site Council:
•   BPS uses School Messenger, an automatic telephone calling, text,
    and email system, to contact families of students and BPS staff. It
                                                                                 ••    reviews and approves the Quality School Plan
                                                                                       reviews and comments on the entire school budget
    is used to communicate important information quickly, such as                      and rates on the discretionary budget
    school emergencies and reminders about events and deadlines.
    You may receive automated calls and/or emails from your child’s
                                                                                  •    develops and approves plans to increase parent
                                                                                       engagement
    school or the BPS central office alerting you to vital information.
    IMPORTANT: Contact the school if your phone number changes!
                                                                                  ••   approves waivers to BPS rules and union contracts
                                                                                       reviews and approves all recommendations that
•   Through the Student Information System (SIS) Family Portal (also
    referred to as ASPEN), families can go online to view current                  •
                                                                                       will have a major impact on the school community
                                                                                       oversees all school-based committees.
    grades and assignments for their children, check daily attendance,       ‡‡ The parent representatives on the School Site Council
    and even receive automatic notifications by email or text message.           must report back to the SPC.
    Families can also view school announcements and receive
    communications from teachers. Information on students’ summer            ‡‡ School Site Council meetings are public meetings,
    school status is also posted in the SIS Family Portal. To register for       open to all.
    the SIS Family Portal, go online to sis.mybps.org. We have created                    More Information:
    a step-by-step guide to help you set up your account. You can find                   Office of Engagement
    the online instructions and video at bostonpublicschools.org/SIS.             bostonpublicschools.org/engagement
    Additional training opportunities may be available through your                          617-635-7750
    child’s school.

FILL OUT THE PARENT & STUDENT AGREEMENT AT www.bostonpublicschools.org/contact                                                              7
Visitors are Welcome!
                                 T  he Boston Public Schools extends a warm
                                    welcome to parents and others to visit our
                                 schools and classrooms. At the same time, we
                                                                                           Communications Policy
                                                                                           The Boston Public Schools, Boston School
                                 must assure that our students and staff are safe and      Committee, Superintendent, and all central
                                 learning is not disrupted.                                and school-based staff have a responsibility to
                                 Schools must be aware of who is in the building           communicate accurately and in a timely
                                 and why they are there. All schools have a video          manner with families, students, colleagues,
                                 buzz-in system so no one can enter the building           partners, and the community. Ongoing
                                 without the knowledge of the office staff. Middle         communication is essential to developing and
                                 schools, high schools, and many K-8 schools have          sustaining effective home/school/community
                                 security professionals on-site.                           partnerships for improving student
                                                                                           achievement.
In addition, we have developed the following guidelines for school visitors.
“Visitors” include parents and school department employees, as well as others.             The Boston School Committee affirms these

•   All visitors must report to the school office and sign in, and they must sign out
    before leaving. Some schools have a desk near the main entrance where visitors
                                                                                           principles:
                                                                                           ‡‡ Families and citizens have a right to know
    may sign in and out. If no one is sitting at the desk, the visitor must go to the         what is happening in their public schools.
    office.                                                                                ‡‡ All BPS employees have an obligation to
•   All visitors will receive a visitor’s pass when they sign in. They must return it to
    the office or sign-in desk when they leave. Please be sure your visitor’s pass is
                                                                                              ensure that the public is kept
                                                                                              systematically and adequately informed.
    visible while you are in the school or schoolyard. Visitor passes are not required     ‡‡ Boston Public Schools staff and families
    at Open Houses, Parent Nights, or other school-sponsored events open to the               benefit from improved sharing of
    public.                                                                                   information—positive and negative.
•   For the safety of our students and staff, we will consider that visitors who do
    not sign in and cannot show a visitor’s pass are trespassing. A school staff
                                                                                           ‡‡ Written and verbal communication from
                                                                                              schools and employees should reflect the
    member may ask them to leave the building and schoolyard.                                 BPS commitment to supporting all
•   Visitors who want to meet with a teacher or administrator must make an
    appointment. Teachers have time each week set aside to meet with parents. No
                                                                                              children and families, with a focus on
                                                                                              student achievement through high-quality
    appointment is necessary for conferences at Open Houses, Parent Nights, or                teaching and learning.
    other school-sponsored events open to the public.                                      ‡‡ Effective communication must be two-way:
•   Teachers who are expecting a visitor should notify the office. In some cases, a
    staff member may escort the visitor to the meeting place.
                                                                                              schools and the central office must find
                                                                                              ways to listen to and garner input from

•   Sometimes there may be a problem between a parent and a teacher or other
    staff member. If a meeting is scheduled to address the problem, it will take
                                                                                              families, students, and the community,
                                                                                              and respond in clear, concise language.
    place in the office or a conference room—not in the classroom. The parent              ‡‡ All communications must reflect and be
    must first report to the office and will be escorted to the meeting place. A              sensitive to the diversity of BPS families
    school administrator will be present at the meeting.                                      and staff, and be free of bias with respect

•   If parents must pick up their child before the regular dismissal time, they
    should call the school office first. They should pick up their child in the office
                                                                                              to race, ethnicity, language, education,
                                                                                              income, gender, religion, sexual
                                                                                              orientation, or disability.
    or other location named by the school. Parents may not go directly to the
    classroom to pick up their child. The school will not release a student to anyone           More Information about the
    other than a custodial parent without the parent’s consent and proper                        Communications Policy:
    identification.                                                                        bostonpublicschools.org/domain/1884,
•   Occasionally parents or other visitors have disrupted school activities by
    insisting on visiting classrooms unannounced, harassing staff, shouting, or
                                                                                           “Policies & Procedure: Superintendent’s
                                                                                                   Circulars,” then click the
                                                                                                  Communications category.
    using inappropriate language. If such disruptive behavior continues, the school
    administrator may restrict the individual’s visits or deny future access to the                       617-635-9265
    building and schoolyard.
•   Please see page 36 for information on CORI/SORI checks for school
    volunteers.

8         BOSTON PUBLIC SCHOOLS GUIDE FOR STUDENTS & FAMILIES 2018–2019                               www.bostonpublicschools.org
                        Advocating for Your Child:
                            A Problem-Solving Checklist
         If you have a school-related problem, we want to help solve it. Every
         school should have a handbook that describes the procedures for
                                                                                     Transportation
                                                                                       Principal or Headmaster
         resolving problems in the school. If you need additional help, please         Transportation Department, 617-635-9520 or
         call the individuals or offices below in the order listed.                       schoolbus@bostonpublicschools.org
         If possible, provide a written description of your problem. Write           Attendance
         down the name of everyone you speak with and keep all documents               Teacher
         and letters related to your problem.                                          Student Support Coordinator
         Issues Affecting Your Child’s Learning
                                                                                       Principal or Headmaster
            Teacher                                                                 School Assignments, Transfers, Waiting Lists,
            Principal or Headmaster                                                 and Residency
            Academic Superintendent                                                    School Hotline, 617-635-9046 (see page 5 for dates of service)
         General School Issues                                                           Welcome Centers (see page 5)

                                                                                                                                                                  Family/School Partnership
            Principal or Headmaster                                                     School Assignment & Registration, 617-635-9516
            Operational Leader                                                         Appeals concerning residency policy: Ombudsperson, 617-635-9054
            Operational Superintendent                                              REMEMBER: Principals and headmasters can’t make or change school
                                                                                      assignments or guarantee that your child can attend a certain school.
         School Governance (Parent & School Site Councils)
            Principal or Headmaster                                                 English learner Issues
            Office of Engagement, 617-635-7750                                          Teacher
            Operational Superintendent                                                 Principal or Headmaster
         Discipline                                                                      Newcomers Assessment and Counseling Center, 617-635-1565
            Principal or Headmaster                                                     Office of English Learners, 617-635- 9435
            Operational Leader                                                     Special Education Issues
            Operational Superintendent                                               Teacher
         Safety                                                                        Principal or Headmaster
              Principal or Headmaster                                                 Special Education & Student Services, 617-635-8599
              Operational Leader 
              Operational Superintendent                                             Do you still need help resolving a school issue?
              City of Boston Anti-Bullying Hotline, 617-592-2378                      Contact the BPS Ombudsperson.
                                                                                        The Ombudsperson will listen to you and work with you to
   Each school has an Academic Superintendent, an Operational Superintendent,          resolve your problem. The four principles that inform the
    and an Operational Leader. To find contact information for your school’s            work of the Ombudsperson are neutrality, independence,
    Academic Superintendent, Operational Superintendent, and Operational
    Leader, please visit our website: bostonpublicschools.org/Schools and open the
                                                                                        confidentiality, and informality.
    School Organization Chart at the bottom of the page.                                617-635-9054 or 857-891-1363

To Learn More about Family/School                                                              Did you know…
Partnership
                                                                                        You don’t have to wait for school Open Houses to meet with
ÂÂ Visit the Office of Engagement website                                                your child’s teacher. Teachers have time set aside each week for
    		                                   bostonpublicschools.org/engagement              contact with parents.
ÂÂ Visit the BPS website, contact your school, or call:                                 Call the school office to schedule a time to talk with the teacher
    Office of Engagement                                 617-635-9660                    — either at the school or by telephone.
    BPS Welcome Centers                                     See page 5
    District English Learners Advisory Committee (DELAC) 617-635-9435                   By the end of September, each school must give parents the
    Partner BPS                          617-635-6772 / PartnerBPS.org                   name and phone number of school staff (in addition to their
    Special Needs Parent Advisory Council (SpedPAC)      617-297-7335                    child’s teacher) whom parents can call if they are concerned
                                                                                         about their child’s progress.
ÂÂ See pages 57-59 for a list of organizations that provide
    education-related resources and support for families.                               Each fall, teachers must give families an outline of the year’s
                                                                                         learning objectives, curriculum, and student projects.

FILL OUT THE PARENT & STUDENT AGREEMENT AT www.bostonpublicschools.org/contact                                                                                9
Preparing for a Productive Parent–Teacher Conference

W     hen the time comes for a parent-teacher conference, the
      right preparation can help parents get much more out of
the meeting and help them gain a better understanding of what
                                                                         progress, and achievements in one or more subjects. The student
                                                                         describes to the parents and teacher what is good about the work,
                                                                         what he or she learned, and where improvements can be made.
they can do to help their child succeed. Careful preparation will        If the student is not participating in the conference, parents may
also help parents set the stage for an ongoing relationship with the     ask their child beforehand if he or she has any concerns about
teacher.                                                                 school. Also, parents may wish to ask the child what his or her
                                                                         strengths and weaknesses are, and what some favorite and least
Getting a Good Start                                                     favorite subjects are. It will save time during the conference if
Parents should try to establish a positive relationship with the         parents have already discussed books, classes, and schedules with
teacher. One way to do this is to comment on something that              their child.
reflects well upon the teacher. For example, thank the teacher for       Parents may consider telling teachers about any big changes that
having made thoughtful notes on your child’s homework or for             have taken place in the child’s life (such as the death of a pet, a
the special attention in helping your child learn to multiply.           grandparent who is ill, parents who are divorcing, or a family
Often, at parent-teacher conferences, teachers will give parents         move), or important activities in which the child is involved (such
examples of the student’s work and possibly a report card. This is       as sports, scouts, community service, or an after-school job).
a good time to have a conversation about teaching methods and
how student progress is measured. Are students assessed through          Addressing Problems
tests? Portfolios? Class participation? Projects? Parents may also ask   Parent-teacher conferences are a good time to discuss any
the teacher to help them understand school policies.                     challenges—either academic or behavioral—a child might be
                                                                         having at school. When problems arise, parents will want to:
How is My Child Doing?
                                                                         •   Avoid angry or apologetic reactions. Instead, ask for examples.
Since the parent-teacher conference is usually about 20 minutes,
parents should plan to cover only a few topics. When putting
together a list of questions, you might want to ask the most
                                                                         •   Ask what is being done about the problem and what strategies
                                                                             seem to help at school.
important ones first.
Here are some questions you might want to ask about your child:
                                                                         •   Develop an action plan that may include steps that parents
                                                                             can take at home and steps the teacher will take when the

•   What is my child like during the day? Does he or she
    participate in class discussions and activities?                     •
                                                                             problem comes up at school.
                                                                             Schedule a follow-up conference and decide on the best way

•   What subjects are my child doing well in? What subjects are
                                                                             to stay in touch (phone, email, or letters sent to the home).
    my child struggling with? How will the school support her/           Following Up
    him over the next term so that s/he is at grade level in those
    subjects? What are some things can I do at home to help him/         When discussing the conference with the child afterward, stress
    her improve in the areas that need work?                             the good things that were covered and be direct about problems

•   What are the standards for my child’s grade level? Can you
    show me a piece of work that reflects the highest standard?
                                                                         that were identified. If appropriate, explain to the child any action
                                                                         plans that were arranged.

•   How does my child interact with other children and adults?
                                                                         A good way to promote a continuing relationship with the

•
                                                                         teacher is to say “thank you” with a note, email, or telephone call.
    How much help should I provide on homework assignments?              Keeping in touch with the teacher, even when things are going
•   Is my child in different classes or groups for different subjects?
    How are these groups determined?
                                                                         well, can help the child do better in school. When a child knows
                                                                         parents and teachers are regularly working together, the child will

•   Is my child trying as hard as he or she can?
                                                                         see that education is a high priority requiring commitment and
                                                                         effort.

Including the Student                                                                             — by Ted Villaire
                                                                                        (edited by the Boston Public Schools)
A growing number of middle schools and high schools are finding
                                                                                 Reprinted with permission from the National PTA, pta.org
that including students in parent-teacher conferences gives the
student a greater sense of responsibility for his or her learning.
During the conference, students will often discuss portfolios—a
collection of student work that shows the student’s efforts,

10        BOSTON PUBLIC SCHOOLS GUIDE FOR STUDENTS & FAMILIES 2018–2019                                    www.bostonpublicschools.org
Family/School Partnership:
The Home Connection
Simple Ways to Encourage Learning
Here are some simple things you can do at home to help your child learn and succeed.                          Pie R Squared
  1
          Let your children know you believe in them. Let your children hear, starting at a very          Free math help from basics to calculus
          young age, that you believe in their ability to do well. Continue to tell them this at          for students in kindergarten–grade 12
          every age. Help them understand the connection between effort and achievement: if
          they work hard at school, they will be successful.                                                Monday–Thursday 3:00–7:00 p.m.
                                                                                                           in the lobby of the Bolling Building

  2
          Talk, read, and play with your children, as often as you can, starting when they are infants.
          These activities help them to develop oral language and reading skills and expose them            2300 Washington Street, Roxbury
          to new ideas and knowledge, which in turn will help them to succeed in school. Talk                next to the Dudley MBTA station
          with them about their lives and interests. Share stories of your life with them. Read with
          them every day!                                                                                  Contact: 314piersquared@gmail.com

  3
          Involve your extended family. Ask all the people who care about your children—aunts,               Parents and students can register
                                                                                                                    online for tutoring.

                                                                                                                                                        Family/School Partnership
          uncles, grandparents, cousins, godparents, baby sitters, neighbors, and friends—to
          encourage your children to do well in school and express their love of learning.
                                                                                                                     piersquared.org

  4
          Limit screen time. Set limits on the time your child spends on the computer and
          electronic devices, watching TV, playing video games, and texting—whether they are
          with you, with a baby sitter, or alone. Children under age two should not watch TV
          at all. Screen time should be educationally focused and help students to reinforce or
          expand their learning opportunities. Less “screen” time can mean more time for exercise,
          imaginative play and reading.

  5
          Show a positive attitude toward school and learning. Express your interest in how your
          children are doing at school. Try asking simple questions such as “Was your best friend
          at school today? Did you do anything new at school?” Also ask questions that don’t have
          a “yes” or “no” answer, such as, “What did you do in art today?” If you can, find ways to
          get involved at your children’s school. For younger children, go through their backpacks
          nightly to see the work they have done and to look for any important notices from their
          teachers. For older students, schedule quarterly meetings with their guidance counselor
          to monitor whether your child is on track for meeting grade level expectations.

  6
          Make sure your children do homework. Look over your children’s homework each night.
          Ask them to explain what they are learning. Make sure that assignments are completed.
          If possible, find a quiet place with good light for your children to study, and set aside
          time each evening for homework. Turn off the TV during homework time. If your
          children often say there was no homework assigned, check with the teacher. Ask if the
          teacher uses the SIS Family Portal or other websites to share assignments and other
          information, and sign up so that you can follow your child’s progress.

                                                                                                            Did you know…
  7
          Help your children with time management and organization. Make sure that they have
          notebooks or folders for each subject. Try to have paper, pencils, and other school
          supplies on hand. Give them tips on how to take clear notes and write down all
          school assignments. Establish a set time each day for doing homework. Children often            BPS Parent University offers
          concentrate better on homework after a break and some physical exercise—but don’t               sessions at local schools, community
          leave it until just before bedtime. It’s usually better to have children do the hardest         organizations, and libraries on topics
          assignments first, before they get tired. However, sometimes it helps to get focused by         ranging from testing and early
          starting with something easy.                                                                   childhood to school transitions and
                                                                                                          nutrition.

  8
          Make sure your children get enough sleep. Children, and even adolescents, need at               More Information:
          least nine hours of sleep each night to do their best in school. According to the National
          Institutes of Health, a child who hasn’t had enough sleep has trouble paying attention          617-635-7750
          and responding quickly, and may have more behavior problems. Setting a regular                  bostonpublicschools.org/
          bedtime for your children is another simple way to encourage learning.                          parentuniversity
          Adapted from colorincolorado.org (a great resource, in English and Spanish)                     parentuniversity@
          For more ideas on helping your child at home, ask the teacher.                                  bostonpublicschools.org

FILL OUT THE PARENT & STUDENT AGREEMENT AT www.bostonpublicschools.org/contact                                                                     11
Family/School Partnership: The Home Connection (cont.)
Math Tips for Parents                                                 Reading Tips for Parents
 Ask your child, “How do you know?” and “What do you notice?”        ;;
                                                                       Play with letters, words, and sounds with very young children.
   to understand and extend your child’s thinking. Be aware of           Use sounds, songs, gestures, and words that rhyme to build
   how your child is making sense of the math, and don’t teach           language and language use. Have fun with language!
   “shortcuts,” as this may only confuse your child. Listen to your   ;;
                                                                       Provide your child with a lot of opportunities to read aloud.
   child’s ideas and encourage them to see mistakes as part of the    ;;
                                                                       As your child reads, point out spelling and sound patterns such
   learning process. Many schools have Math Nights for parents           as “cat, pat, hat.”
   to learn about the school’s approach to math instruction.
                                                                      ;;
                                                                       Find ways to read, write, and tell stories with your child.
 Use household chores and everyday opportunities to reinforce           Read about it, talk about it! Find ways for your child to build
   math learning. Everyday opportunities might include:                  understanding, the ultimate goal of reading.
   fCounting
    f         and Comparing: Ask questions like, “How many            ;;
                                                                       Point out printed words in your home and other places you
    trucks do you see?” “How many people are ahead of us in              take your child.
    line?” “Can you put 10 containers of yogurt in the basket?”       ;;
                                                                       Have younger children read aloud to you every night (even
    “Are there more apples or oranges in the bowl?”                      comic books are okay), and read aloud to your child, in
   fAdding
    f       and Subtracting: Ask questions that encourage                English or in the language spoken at home
    children to engage in adding and subtracting with everyday        ;;
                                                                       Choose a quiet place, free from distractions, for your child to
    situations: “You had 6 crackers and then you ate 2 crackers.         do nightly reading.
    How many crackers do you have left?”                              ;;
                                                                       Have your child read in ordinary places (in the car, reading
   fMultiplying
    f           and Dividing: Ask questions like “If there are           recipes, in the supermarket, during breakfast, at bedtime—
    6 juice boxes in a package, how many juice boxes are in 3            even in the bathtub!)
    packages?”                                                        ;;
                                                                       Letting your child see you read will spark his interest.
   fGeometry:
    f         Ask your child to describe and compare shapes           ;;
                                                                       Ask your child questions about the characters and events in
    while taking a walk.                                                 the story being read. Ask why she thinks a character acted
   fMeasurement:
    f              Use a ruler or other measuring tool to find           in a certain way. Ask her to support the answer given with
    the length of various objects in your home. Have your child          information from the story. Before getting to the end of a
    compare the length of these objects.                                 story, ask what she thinks will happen next and why.
   fFractions:
    f          “If this recipe calls for ¼ cup sugar and we want to   ;;
                                                                       Take your child to the library or bookstore as often as you can.
    double the recipe, how much sugar do we need?”                       Help him apply for a Boston Public Library card—it’s free!

 Learn how to help at home with these on-line resources:             ;;
                                                                       Encourage your child to read a wide variety of books and on-
                                                                         line materials that introduce experiences and opportunities
   fBPS
    f    Family Guides to Learning, bostonpublicschools.org/             your child might be thinking about.
    Page/6282. Tips for parents and caregivers on how to talk
    about student learning with their child and the teacher, as
                                                                      ;;
                                                                       Ask your child about a movie or show she has seen, and find a
                                                                         book on that topic.
    well as activities for supporting learning at home.
   fParent
    f      Roadmaps to the Common Core State Standards for
                                                                      ;;
                                                                       Encourage your child to write emails, text, use Twitter,
                                                                         Instagram, and create blogs based on their interests.
    Mathematics, bostonpublicschools.org/commoncore.
   fHomework
    f        help and lots of links to resources: figurethis.                      Why should I read to my child?
     nctm.org/fc/family_corner.htm
                                                                       Children love it when their parent, an older child, or another adult reads to
   fVideos
    f       for families produced by NCTM and the Hunt                 them—and it is the single most important activity to help children become
    Institute that feature Boston educators talking about the          successful readers.
    Common Core State Standards in Mathematics:                        My daughter can read books on her own. Should I still read to her?
     nctm.org/standards-and-positions/common-core-state-standards/     Yes! Even adults like being read to. Children are able to understand and enjoy
     teaching-and-learning-mathematics-with-the-common-core/           books that are read to them that are too difficult for them to read on their own.
                                                                       How do I know if the books I choose for my son are too hard?
 Keep in touch with the teacher to learn whether your child is        The books that children read independently should be easy so they don’t become
   working at grade level and what the family can do at home           frustrated. If they succeed with easier books, they will want to read more.
   to help improve academic progress. Many schools have Math
   Nights for parents to learn about the school’s approach to          What should my child read?
   math instruction.                                                   Children should read many kinds of texts: fiction, non-fiction, fantasy,
                                                                       biographies, nursery rhymes, feature articles, memoirs, and poetry. Schedule
                                                                       regular trips to the library. Librarians are wonderful resources to help your
                                                                       children find books that they will love.

12       BOSTON PUBLIC SCHOOLS GUIDE FOR STUDENTS & FAMILIES 2018–2019                                       www.bostonpublicschools.org
The Boston Public Schools Promotion Policy
B   PS is committed to ensuring that every graduate is a lifelong learner, productive
    worker, responsible citizen, and thoughtful participant in our diverse
communities. Every teacher, administrator, parent/guardian, and other adult involved
in the lives of BPS students shares in the responsibility to help all students meet these
expectations.
The Promotion Policy reinforces the expectations and responsibilities set forth in the
BPS Citywide Learning Standards. The Promotion Policy:
•  defines the expectations we hold for all students and the strategies that schools
   will use to help them succeed
•  ensures that promotions are earned and based on academic achievement
•  reduces as much as possible the need for students to repeat a grade
•  ensures that students start each school year with the skills and knowledge they
   need to do grade-level work, and that graduates are well prepared for higher
   education, adult life, and employment
•  ensures that students are prepared to pass the Massachusetts Comprehensive
   Assessment System (MCAS)
•  establishes a process that supports students and demands hard work from them
                                                                                            Passing Grades in Courses
•  recognizes that students learn at different rates and calls for organizational
   structures that respond to students’ differences
                                                                                            Teachers base the grades they give to
                                                                                            students on several factors, including:
•  defines the ways in which teachers, administrators, students, and parents are
   accountable.
                                                                                            ‡‡ scores on classroom tests
                                                                                            ‡‡ completion of required products—for
                                                                                                example, a book report or science
Promotion Requirements for All Grades                                                           project. The Promotion Policy says
                                                                                                students’ grades on these products will
Students must fulfill several requirements to be promoted to the next grade. All
                                                                                                count for at least 20% of their year-end

                                                                                                                                           Promotion & Assessment
students must earn passing grades in certain courses and maintain good attendance.              grades
Schools may establish promotion requirements that exceed those listed on pages              ‡‡ homework assignments
18–23. The School Site Council must approve these additional requirements.
                                                                                            ‡‡ participation in class discussions and
Boston Public Schools is reviewing its graduation requirements in order to better               activities
align them with Massachusetts Department of Elementary & Secondary Education                ‡‡ notebooks
(DESE) expectations and the Massachusetts Core High School Program of Study.                ‡‡ citywide tests in English, math, history/
Please see page 22.                                                                             social studies and science/technology.
English Learners                                                                            A passing grade for any course, classroom
                                                                                            test, or assignment is 60% or higher.
Students in programs for English learners must meet promotion and graduation
requirements. However, EL students may not be retained in grade if the only reason
for not passing the required tests is lack of language knowledge. Students will have
                                                                                            Keeping Track of Progress
access to bilingual (word to word) dictionaries during all standardized assessments         Parents can keep informed about their
except those assessing English language skills and knowledge. English learner students      children’s progress through:
in their first year of enrollment in school in the U.S. are not required to take the        ‡‡ report cards (see the schedule inside
MCAS ELA assessment as long as they have participated in the annual English                     the back cover of this Guide)
language proficiency assessment for English learner students.                               ‡‡ parent-teacher conferences
Students with Disabilities                                                                  ‡‡ individual reports on results of state
                                                                                                tests
Students with disabilities are expected to meet promotion and graduation
                                                                                            ‡‡ review of homework, tests, and
requirements. A student’s Individualized Education Program (IEP) or Section 504                 notebooks
Plan will describe the conditions under which the student will take standardized
tests for each subject scheduled for assessment, or if the student requires an alternate
                                                                                            ‡‡ progress reports for students with
                                                                                                disabilities, distributed with report
assessment. Alternate assessments are intended for a very small number of students              cards, that describe how students are
with significant disabilities who are unable to take standard MCAS tests, even                  doing in meeting the goals outlined in
with accommodations. A student’s 504 plan will describe what, if any, testing                   their IEPs.
accommodation will be needed.

FILL OUT THE PARENT & STUDENT AGREEMENT AT www.bostonpublicschools.org/contact                                                       13
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